Lung Cancer Costs Victoria $5 Billion Each Year

Lung Cancer Costs Victoria $5 Billion Each Year

Victoria Minister for Health David Davis

New Point-Of-Sale Tobacco Bans In New Year

Victor P Taffa

New Point-Of-Sale Bans on the display of Tobacco Products in Victoria commence on January 1st, Health Minister David Davis said today.

“There is a high level of support among the Victorian public for a complete ban of tobacco point-of-sale display in retail outlets.” Mr. Davis said.

“Despite great progress, tobacco use remains the leading preventable cause of illness and death in Victoria, claiming around 4,000 lives, causing 80 % of lung cancer cases and costing Victorians around $5 Billion every year.”

“The ban on the display of tobacco products in retail outlets commencing on 1 January will further protect young people from exposure to tobacco marketing and promotion.” Mr. Davis said.

 

“Initiatives such as these will further help to reduce the number of young Victorians who adopt the habit and make it easier to quit.”

Mr. Davis said Victoria had a long and successful bi-partisan history of implementing smoking reforms to reduce tobacco-related harm, and this measure will build on past achievements.

“Our aim is to continue to have a significant impact in reducing the burden of ill health and the cost of smoking to the Victorian community.” Mr. Davis said.

Mr. Davis said tobacco reforms in Victoria have seen smoking banned in pubs, clubs, restaurants, cafes, more than 80,000 enclosed workplaces, shopping centres, gaming venues, underage music and dance events and covered areas of railway station platforms and tram and bus shelters.

Since January 1 this year key changes to tobacco laws in Victoria have included:

  • Banning smoking in cars carrying children under the age of 18 years;
  • Banning the sale of tobacco at temporary outlets and providing Ministerial power to ban youth-orientated tobacco products and packaging;
  • Implementing improved cessation services with an emphasis on supporting pregnant women, Aboriginal and other groups with high smoking rates.

The cost of compliance to general tobacco retailers has been minimised by allowing flexibility in the way the new requirements can be met.

“For example, retailers may cover their existing displays with an opaque material, such as a curtain, or move cigarettes to an area out of view, such as under the counter.” Mr. Davis said.

In the lead up to the changes all known 11,606 tobacco retailers in Victoria received a letter and fact sheet providing a summary of their obligations under the Tobacco Act.

Any retailers with enquiries about how they can comply with the new laws can call the Tobacco Information Line on 1300 136 775.